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Independent Thoughts: With new song’s release, Hwang takes followers behind scenes

by | May 2, 2024 | Featured

Ryan Hwang

Ryan Hwang, who recently released a song called “I Want You,” is trying to make a name for himself in the music business in Los Angeles.

When we last checked in with Ryan Hwang one year ago, the Hopkinton High School 2023 graduate was headed west to the University of Southern California, where he had secured one of a few coveted spots in a music production program.

Now nearing the end of his freshman year at USC, Hwang recently released an original song called “I Want You” featuring classmate Max Pedra. Hwang also has posted videos on his social media accounts (@ryanhwangmusic) showing how he made the song.

“I like to take my audience along as I work on it from the initial idea — not in real time, but recreating the process,” Hwang explained. “I show the behind-the-scenes process of producing, writing and performing the song. I show how accessible creating a song idea from an experience or a random thought can become.

“On this song, me and my friend Max did writing, production, vocals and mixing. This one’s completely electronic, so there are no instruments.”

The release now is on all the major platforms, including Apple Music and Spotify, and Hwang is eager to see how well it does. While it’s not his first song — he put together an album last year of tunes he created while in high school — this one varies in a few ways from his previous releases and demonstrates his growth as a musician and producer.

“I’ve expanded my technical abilities, genre versatility and sound,” he said, adding that this is his first collaborative record.

He said that he arrived at USC with more of an “electronic pop” background, but his new song is “more R&B pop with K-pop influence.”

Said Hwang: “I’m exploring the world that I’m in, but I’m exploring different niches within the genre.”

The song also came from an original idea.

“Unlike a lot of the other songs that I write based on personal experiences or real-life ideas, this one was more of a fictional idea, a concept in creating almost a character and a scene with my friend Max,” Hwang said. “I had an idea with creating a song taking place at a party — it wasn’t something that happened. Once our visions were able to connect, we were able to get to work.”

While this song is one he performed, Hwang said he also is working on songs to pitch to established artists. He explained that if he releases a song on his own, no one else will pick it up. So he’s also working on pieces that other artists might be interested in using, which would give Hwang valuable experience and help build his resume — and perhaps his wallet.

“There are a lot of ghost writers, and that’s what I’ve been doing for other artists,” he said, noting that USC proves opportunities with connections to the music industry. “You do get royalties, but part of it is the exposure and being seen by a label who hears a demo I made and becomes interested. I’m more in it at this point for the exposure. I’m just trying to get seen by the team. I identify as a pop producer and songwriter and feel like that’s what I do best.”

Added Hwang: “I’m sitting on a bunch of music right now, a lot of songs that are done and ready to go. I want to save some in my catalog where I’m able to send them to other artists. I’m trying to build a catalog of genre diversity, not a bunch of songs that all sound the same. Songs that I can’t see anyone else on, I release, like this one.”

Fashion show raises funds

The annual Swoon Fashion Show Fundraiser, a popular local event that highlights the latest in spring and summer fashion while raising awareness and money for cancer research, was held April 8-9 at Central Public House on Main Street.

A record $35,000 was raised to support research into ovarian cancer and an early detection tool at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, in conjunction with the organization Girly Girl P.A.R.T.S., according to Swoon owner Kathy Mazur, who organizes the event along with fellow cancer survivor Marie Boyle.

Mazur noted that this year the organizers invited their daughters to be part of the event in an effort “to emphasize the importance of research for not just now, but our next generation … before a late-stage diagnosis has to happen.”

All the models at the two-night event were cancer survivors from the community.

Added Mazur: “We couldn’t have had all the success without the support of so many local businesses who sponsored us as well as such a supportive gathering of women each night!”

HHS student makes bike stand

Madhavendra Saxena, a sophomore at Hopkinton High School, recently constructed a bicycle stand from used wooden pallets and placed it at the school bus stop on Aspen Lane, in the Legacy Farms South neighborhood.

Saxena indicated that he would like to make more stands and locate them at other bus stops in town, and he is seeking $500 for the tools and lumber to make seven additional stands. He reached out to Town Hall with hopes of including his request as part of the participatory budget but was too late for this year. He was encouraged to apply for next year, assuming the program continues.

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